A Breath of Fresh Air

Bishop Schneider’s statement. On the feast of Pentecost Bishop Schneider issued a lengthy statement in which he rightly criticized Vatican II for having errors, concentrating particularly on Dignitatis Humanæ, which proclaims the moral right to embrace false religions. In this he was correct, of course. However, his solution was very seriously erroneous, namely that the Church’s councils can err, and are in need of correction occasionally. He then went on to point out “errors” in past councils.

The good aspect of his statement is that a member of the Novus Ordo hierarchy is recognizing that there is error in Vatican II. Up to now the neocons have been attempting to interpret Vatican II in some orthodox manner. That system, false as it is, worked for them until Bergoglio’s Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Lætitia came along. The content of this document is clearly a heretical teaching in conflict with the Sixth Commandment and even the natural law.

I think that the recognition of this error of Vatican II by Bishop Schneider is a good development, since, as everyone knows from my writings, I hold that Vatican II is the source of the entire problem in the Church. It is a council which introduced Kantian subjectivism into the Catholic Church, which is a lethal poison to an institution which is dogmatic by its very nature. All of the big errors of Vatican II, ecumenism, the new ecclesiology, collegiality, and religious liberty, spring from this Kantian subjectivism, which is ingrained in the modern mind.

Vatican II needs to be reduced, by a papal pronouncement, to Ephesus II or the Council of Basle, or the Council of Constance in its early sessions. These were councils which entirely or in part deviated from the Catholic Faith. For this reason they were condemned and nullified as councils, either entirely or in part.

The obvious “inconvenience” of a nullification of Vatican II is the fact that it was promulgated by Paul VI, so he too needs to be declared a false pope. To me, there is no other way out of this problem. If these steps are not taken, the seamless garment of the Church’s unchanging doctrine will be torn to shreds. The Catholic Church will be finished, and the claim of He who hears you hears Me will no longer have any meaning.

The bad aspect of Bishop Schneider’s declaration is his “fix” of the problem of error in the Council. He is having recourse, like Cardinal Burke, to the Correction Theory, namely that popes and councils can make errors, but the sensus fidelium (the belief system of the laity) is infallible, and will correct the error.

This is precisely the conciliarist heresy of Pierre d’Ailly and Gerson, of which I spoke in a previous post. It is also the teaching of the arch-modernist heresiarch Hans Küng.

This cockeyed notion strips the pope and the hierarchy of their teaching authority, and places it in the hands of the learning Church.

Here I must explain. Theologians commonly distinguish between the teaching Church and the learning Church. The teaching Church is the hierarchy; the learning Church is constituted by all those who receive with faith or religious assent the teachings of the hierarchy. So even the popes and bishops themselves are bound to believe and accept the very doctrines which they teach, and in so doing are members of the learning Church. The sensus fidelium, or belief system of the faithful, is not due to some divine assistance given to them by the Holy Ghost whereby they infallibly judge concerning the truths of Revelation. To the contrary, if the faithful have universally and constantly believed a doctrine, it is because the teaching authority Church, the hierarchy, has taught it to them.

In Bishop Schneider’s system, however, the learning Church becomes the teaching Church. Does this make sense? And the teaching Church learns from the learning Church? Where do we find such a notion in Sacred Scripture? In Tradition? In the teachings of the Fathers? In the teachings of the popes or general councils? In the teachings of theologians?

This upside-down error concerning the Church’s teaching is based on yet another: That the universal ordinary magisterium (UOM) consists not only in the universal teaching of the hierarchy together with the pope in matters of faith and morals, but also in the temporal continuity of the doctrine.

Again, let me explain. If you research the subject of universal ordinary magisterium, you will find in all theologians and textbooks the same definition: that it consists in the teaching of the pope and all the bishops dispersed throughout the world concerning a doctrine of faith or morals, and which is contained in divine Revelation. It must be proposed, furthermore, as having been divinely revealed.

The Society of Saint Pius X, in order to save their system of recognize and resist, have added a further condition: that there must be a temporal continuity of this doctrine, that is, it must be constantly taught over time in order to qualify as UOM. This means that the UOM could occasionally deviate from the truth, but if you find a pattern of consistency over time, then you know that it is infallibly true.

I compare it to a dot-to-dot picture. If by connecting the dots you see a figure appear — a bird or a dog, for instance — then you know you are on the right track. So, in the SSPX system, if you see a pattern appear over time, in which many acts of UOM are in agreement, then you have infallible UOM. But you could have some deviations. These you just ignore or resist, since they are not part of the pattern. But who decides what is in conformity with the pattern or not? The pope or the SSPX?

No Catholic theologian mentions this condition of temporal continuity. It is true that UOM has the property of consistency over time, but this consistency is the effect of the assistance of the hierarchy by the Spirit of Truth, and not the cause of the infallibility of the doctrine. In like manner, smoke is the effect of fire, but not its cause. Therefore something is not UOM because it is consistent with the past teaching, but instead the reverse is true: something is consistent with past teaching because it is UOM.

In this system of Bishop Schneider and the SSPX, therefore, if the UOM is not in conformity with Tradition, then it is just wrong, and the faithful must merely reject the new teaching, and some members of the hierarchy merely need to speak out against it. This is straight out of the pages of Hans Küng, with the sole exception that he restricts his discussion to the solemn magisterium.

But for a greater reason he would apply it to the UOM. It is also the conciliarist heresy of the first sessions of the Council of Constance. (1)

This poisonous doctrine is the same as Protestantism. Whereas the Protestants hold to free examination of the Scriptures, Bishop Schneider, the SSPX and the neocons are now holding to the doctrine of free examination of Tradition, that is, they are opposing their view and their judgment concerning the continuity of doctrine to that of the Catholic hierarchy. For who is the arbiter of what is in conformity with Tradition or not? Cardinal Burke? Bishop Schneider? The SSPX? Or the Roman Pontiff? Take this power from the pope and you destroy the Catholic Church.

To support his theory Bishop Schneider has researched the “errors” of certain councils. Most of his examples are not applicable, since they are purely disciplinary matters (e.g., that Jews should wear special clothing) and do not concern faith and morals.

The only one that deserves any attention is that of the Council of Florence. The Council of Florence, in a decree given to the Armenian schismatics as the basis of their reconciliation with Rome, stated that the matter of priestly ordination consisted not only in the imposition of hands, but also in the porrection of instruments (the touching of the chalice and paten by the ordinand). Over the years, theologians grappled with the problem that the Greeks never required this for validity.

Father Edouard Hugon, commenting on this problem says this: “First of all, it is hard, even very hard, to admit a grave error in a decree of so much importance and which is truly dogmatic, although not all of the characteristics of infallibility come together in it, which decree, the Roman Pontiff, in the name of the council of Florence and in the name of the Roman Church gave to the Eastern Church. If this decree is erroneous, then the Oriental Church was deceived in the very solemn circumstance in which they were returning to the Roman Church, at the very invitation of the Roman Church!”

He does admit, however, that the Church could correct this decree, if indeed it contained an error.

Pope Pius XII in 1947 settled the hotly discussed issue by removing the necessity of the porrection of instruments for validity. But he did not say that the Council of Florence was wrong. He said, “We do by Our Apostolic Authority declare, and if there was ever a lawful disposition to the contrary We now decree that at least in the future the porrection of instruments is not necessary for the validity of the Sacred Orders of the Diaconate, the Priesthood, and the Episcopacy.” He also pointed out that the Council of Florence did not require the Greeks to use the porrection of instruments, thereby proving that the Council of Florence did not see the porrection of instruments as being of divine origin. It was a requirement in the Latin rite only, which concludes that the Church has the power to change those things which are not of divine institution. This furthermore proves the point of Père Hugon and other theologians, that the Catholic Church has control over the determination of matter and form of those sacraments in which the matter and form were determined by Christ only in a general way, but not specifically. Our Lord specifically determined matter and form only for Baptism and Holy Eucharist, and so the Church has no power to change these things.

This explains the diversity of matter and form in the Eastern and Roman rites for various sacraments. For example, the Eastern rites impose only one hand for ordination. This was even observed in the West for a time. The Church can determine these things as she will, and may require something for validity in one rite and not another for a multitude of reasons. The essential goal of the Church is to preserve the unambiguous signification of the sacrament.

Consequently Bishop Schneider’s example from the Council of Florence does not apply. For nowhere did the Church say that the Council was erroneous. Pius XII’s justification for the change of matter and form was not that the Church was wrong in the Council of Florence, but that the Church has control over the matter and form of Holy Orders.

A cure worse than the disease. Actually the new Correction Theory is far worse than the previous error, that of the hermeneutic of continuity. This is a fancy term to mean that we can save Vatican II by interpreting it “according to Tradition.” Of course, this is impossible. But I will say this for the proponents of hermeneutic of continuity: at least they preserve the notion of the Church’s teaching authority and the necessity of its unchanging consistency. The Correction Theory, on the other hand, destroys the very notion of the homogeneous continuity of doctrine.

In addition, Bishop Schneider in this document plays the old pastoral council card, as if to confine Vatican II to mere disciplinary rules which could be reformed. But to strip Vatican II of any doctrinal authority has no basis. For it speaks about many doctrinal issues, including the nature of the Church of Christ and the right to embrace false religions. This is faith and morals. Furthermore, has not the hierarchy universally promulgated the decrees of the Council? Do they not require adherence to its teachings? Can seminarians say “I don’t accept Vatican II,” and still hope for ordination? Is not the obstacle of reunion between SSPX and the Vatican the very doctrine of religious liberty? Does not the Vatican, even the neocon Icon Ratzinger, insist on the heretical interpretation of this document? My point is that the Novus Ordo hierarchy considers the dogmatic and moral teachings of Vatican II to be binding.

I am sure that Bishop Schneider means well and is in good conscience, but he does not understand Catholic doctrine. His “cure” of Vatican II is worse than the disease.

Archbishop Viganò’s statement. In contrast to Bishop Schneider’s statement expounding the Correction Theory, Novus Ordo Archbishop Viganò issued a statement on June 9th which was music to my ears.

Archbishop Viganò starts by praising Bishop Schneider for his insightful criticism of Vatican II, namely that Bergoglio’s claim that God wills many religions is an error which comes straight out of Vatican II.

Then the Archbishop correctly — and refreshingly — criticizes the hermeneutic of continuity, declaring it unsuccessful, citing the Roman poet Horace: Drive nature out with a pitchfork; she will come right back. In other words, you can no more make Vatican II sound orthodox than you could change a frog into a prince.

He then masterfully points out that in any council before Vatican II, there was never talk of the “spirit of the Council,” nor any “post-conciliar era.” Why? Because, as he so rightly puts it: “Those Councils [before Vatican II] were all, indiscriminately, the expression in unison of the voice of Holy Mother Church, and for this very reason the voice of Our Lord Jesus Christ.” Beautiful.

Then Archbishop Viganò goes on to criticize Bishop Schneider’s Correction Theory: “This appears to me to be an argument that, although made with the best of intentions, undermines the Catholic edifice from its foundation.” I could not have said it better myself. He adds: “And, by the same principle, in a certain way we could maintain that the words of Blessed Pius IX in Quanta Cura were in some manner corrected by Vatican II, just as His Excellency hopes could happen for Dignitatis Humanæ.”

Then come these startling words:

There comes a moment in our life when, through the disposition of Providence, we are faced with a decisive choice for the future of the Church and for our eternal salvation. I speak of the choice between understanding the error into which practically all of us have fallen, almost always without evil intentions, and wanting to continue to look the other way or justify ourselves.

Archbishop Viganò criticizes ecumenism, saying that we all assumed that it was a means of drawing non-Catholics of all kinds into the Catholic Church, but in fact “ecumenism was configured in a way that was in direct opposition to the doctrine previously expressed by the Magisterium.” Perfect.

The Archbishop then blasts the notion universally preached by the Novus Ordo, namely that we all worship the same God: “They believe that the One and Triune God revealed to our fathers is the same as the god of Mohammed. Already twenty years ago we heard this repeated from pulpits and episcopal cathedræ, but recently we hear it being affirmed with emphasis even from the highest Throne.”

The next salvo is against the Council’s use of the term subsists in when talking about the Catholic Church and the Church of Christ. The Council teaches that the Church of Christ subsists in the Catholic Church. This is what the Archbishop says: “Thus ‘Ecclesia Christi subsistit in Ecclesia Catholica’ does not specify the identity of the two, but the subsistence of one in the other and, for consistency, also in other churches: here is the opening to interconfessional celebrations, ecumenical prayers, and the inevitable end of any need for the Church in the order of salvation, in her unicity, and in her missionary nature.“ Bravo.

But there is yet better to come:

What the world wants, at the instigation of Masonry and its infernal tentacles, is to create a universal religion that is humanitarian and ecumenical, from which the jealous God whom we adore is banished. And if this is what the world wants, any step in the same direction by the Church is an unfortunate choice which will turn against those who believe that they can jeer at God. The hopes of the Tower of Babel cannot be brought back to life by a globalist plan that has as its goal the cancellation of the Catholic Church, in order to replace it with a confederation of idolaters and heretics united by environmentalism and universal brotherhood. There can be no brotherhood except in Christ, and only in Christ: qui non est mecum, contra me est.

…that despite all the efforts of the hermeneutic of continuity which shipwrecked miserably at the first confrontation with the reality of the present crisis, it is undeniable that from Vatican II onwards a parallel church was built, superimposed over and diametrically opposed to the true Church of Christ. This parallel church progressively obscured the divine institution founded by Our Lord in order to replace it with a spurious entity, corresponding to the desired universal religion that was first theorized by Masonry.

The Archbishop then devotes some paragraphs to how he was deceived for so many years, assuming that what we were being told by the hierarchy was in accordance with the Catholic Faith. How true this is. This was the natural thing to do, since it is true that the Catholic hierarchy is rightfully presumed to be teaching and defending Catholic doctrine. Now the Archbishop realizes that this confidence in the hierarchy was misplaced.

He finishes his statement by citing the Athanasian Creed, lamenting that the conciliar liturgy outlawed it, and that it was reduced to being recited only twice a year in the 1962 liturgy: “Whosoever wishes to be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholic faith; For unless a person shall have kept this faith whole and inviolate, without doubt he shall eternally perish.”

A big surprise. I could hardly believe my eyes as I read this statement of Archbishop Viganò. In the fifty-five years since Vatican II, I have never seen such a succinct presentation of the errors of Vatican II, and an intelligent criticism of the two “cures” of the Council, the hermeneutic of continuity and the Correction Theory. It is also obvious that the Archbishop is deeply familiar with Catholic doctrine.

I do not know where the Archbishop will go from here, but he is going someplace. His compass, from all that he has said, is pointing straight toward sedevacantism. For he has utterly trashed the Second Vatican Council, masterfully identifying it as the source of the Church’s problems, and loaded with serious errors. He has trashed, as well, the entire post-conciliar era, calling it a parallel church in opposition to the true Church. And since he rejects the Correction Theory, what is there left to do but to annul the Council as an illegitimate meeting? But to say this necessarily implicates John XXIII and Paul VI. It is impossible to assert that the Council is the mother of a false and parallel Church, but that it was promulgated to us by a true pope. To hold that such a deviation comes from the authority of Christ vested in the pope undermines the Catholic edifice from its foundation, to use Archbishop Viganò’s own words.

Declaring the Vatican II popes as false popes will be a very painful act for the Church, but it is indispensable for her integrity, her truth, and her credibility as a divine institution. These maleficent agents — the Vatican II popes — must be unmasked as Modernist intruders who put into place a wicked plan to overthrow the Catholic Church dating back many centuries.

I urge all Catholics to read the entire text of Archbishop Viganò’s statement. It can be found on OnePeterFive, but beware, this is a conservative Novus Ordo website.

Let us pray for Archbishop Viganò, that he make the right decisions in his path to truth, and especially that he avoid the theological pit of recognize and resist, the system of the SSPX, which, precisely, undermines the Church’s magisterium and indefectibility.

(1) The early sessions of the Council of Constance (southern Germany), held from 1414 to 1418, expressed conciliarist doctrine, namely that a general Council was superior to the pope, and could correct a pope, etc. These doctrines were not accepted or approved by Pope Martin V. All of the authority of a Council comes from the approval of the pope. If the pope rejects the teachings even of a general or ecumenical council, the teachings of the Council, however solemnly decreed, count for absolutely nothing. Prominent theologians at that council also proposed the heretical theory that both popes and councils can err, but that the universal Church, i.e., the faithful, cannot err. This is essentially the same as the position of the SSPX and Bishop Schneider.